#RLF2016: Written Worlds, Inspiring Places

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For some strange reason 5 years ago, I decided to start a literature festival. Possibly I had too much time on my hands (I didn’t) possibly I just felt we were lacking a festival in Medway dedicated to writing, and somebody had to do it. I must’ve been mad, and I’m also stubborn, so here we are: the fourth Rochester Literature Festival 2016 kicks off this weekend.

Amidst the usual creative writing workshops, Cafe Crawl and author talks this year, the RLF has a wonderful day of craft activities planned for all ages.

The Turtle Moves, inspired by Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series, sees a Juvenile Crafters’ Guild appear, as if by magic, in Rochester’s Community Hub, where you can design your own Luggage or bring to life a Golem, among other activities. Out and about in the high street you’ll bump into numerous characters – and even see a re-enactment of the Battle of Koom Valley! And shhhhh – it’s rumoured that the Librarian will be appearing in L-Space (Baggins!)

RLF Patron Lisa Cutts is appearing at Strood Library on Oct 4, alongside fellow crime author Simon Booker, while author of The Outlaw Chronicles, Angus Donald, is at Rochester Library on Oct 6. There is also a Local Author Day at Rochester Library between 10am-2pm on Oct 1.

The popular Cafe Crawl takes place on Sunday, Oct 2 and features the Canterbury Yarners, Fiona Sinclair, Nancy Charley, Johanna Coulson and Maggie Butt alternating at Bruno’s Bakes, The Quills and Cafe @172 between 12-3pm.

The festival opens with three creative writing workshops on Saturday, Oct 1: An Introduction to Screenwriting, A Guide to Self Publishing, and Building Your Make Believe World. It ends with a Writers’ Retreat on Sunday, Oct 9.

All the events apart from the workshops are free, and more detail and tickets for the workshops can be booked here.

If you pop down, be sure to say ‘hi’ 🙂

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Sunday Slackers

fruitfaceFood: Guaranteed to get that diet started …

For writers: The Colour Thesaurus. Why have beige when you can have biscotti?

Environment: 40 different fruits on one tree

Architecture: You see, if it was a Woman-Cave, it would already have a bathroom!

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Medical Advances: No More Needles!!! Hopefully.

Art: For Geeks who love ruffs

Books: Gorgeous and amazing 16th century work

 

icebergAnimals: Handy hacks for dog owners

Nature: The forces of …

The kindness of strangers: A war story with heart

Images: Pixabay Fruit/Needle/ Iceberg

Sunday Slackers

Time for tea, and a schmoozy through some fun stuff …

RobotTechnology: Fifteen of the most advanced robots ever invented (video) I’m quite keen on the PR2 – and I checked the date to make sure it wasn’t an April Fool prank!

Literary Art: Graffiti artists’ tributes to Sir Terry Pratchett

And in related news – How you can tell if you’re in an STP novel. Carry on down  and read the comments, there are plenty more ways.

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For S.O.P.H.I.E – the GOMK charity book

A wonderful side effect from my involvement in the Rochester Literature Festival was being asked by one of our exhibiting artists, Richard Jeferies, to write for his charity book, Goth on my Keyboard.

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The Goth character has an adoring public on Facebook and beyond, and is now using her celebrity to publicise a good cause close to home. Myself and fellow writer, Alison Eley, have responded to Richard’s brilliant drawings and character in this book, and Richard himself also adds emotive words to his images, as well as deliver the short and sweet cartoons that are GOMK’s usual platform. It’s a true life mix of humour and poignancy and frankly, well worth your time to read it. I’m thrilled and honoured to be a part of it.

Most of us are free to express ourselves in any way we see fit, whether through our choice of music, art, or the way we dress. Sadly, even these days, there are those who seek to destroy anything they don’t understand, or like, or is different, and Sophie Lancaster paid the worst possible price for this.

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The book is  now published and all the proceeds go to the S.O.P.H.I.E Lancaster Foundation, a charity set up to help fight hate crimes, following the horrifying attack that led to her death. Kicked to death for looking different. In the 21st century, in a civilised, mainly tolerant society, how can this happen? The book, including VAT, costs just £2.39. Please buy it by downloading from the link, and aid this cause in the following aims:

  • To create a lasting legacy to Sophie.
  • To provide educational group-works that will challenge the prejudice and intolerance towards people from alternative subcultures.
  • To campaign to have the UK Hate Crime legislation extended to include people from alternative subcultures or Lifestyle and Dress.

To find out more about the S.O.P.H.I.E Lancaster Foundation, visit the website here.

Stamp Out Prejudice, Intolerance and Hatred Everywhere. Thank you.